Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Austen Revisited: Part Four

These Three Remain by Pamela Aiden

Fitzwilliam Darcy, a man who has been speculated about, revered, and loved throughout the ages, finally gets his own take on the action in Pride and Prejudice. In Pamela Aidan’s trilogy, including An Assembly Such as This, Duty and Desire, and These Three Remain, we encounter Darcy’s mind and heart on what is happening during the period of P&P. 
These Three Remain by Pamela Aidan is the finale of the “Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman” series. I recently read the second book and I really wanted to know Darcy’s perspective on the events after he proposes, is rejected, then saves the day, thus I finished the third installment. 
The series starts where Pride and Prejudice begins, with an assembly in Meryton. The first book covers the time period when Darcy’s party is staying at Netherfield Park and Bingley and Darcy meet the Bennett family. In the second book, Darcy and Bingley are no longer at Netherfield, instead Darcy goes to another friend’s estate and is embroiled in a gothic drama. Then the third book picks up with Darcy going to visit his aunt at Rosings Park, where he meets back up with Miss Elizabeth Darcy who he has just sworn to forget. Instead of forgetting her, however, he endeavors to embrace his emotions and ask for her hand. He is rejected. Thus ensues the story of Darcy’s humbling, hurt, and self-discovery. The story ends with the double wedding of Darcy to Elizabeth and Bingley to Jane. 
The final chapter in the trilogy was enjoyable. I was propelled forward by my desire to see how Darcy’s feelings advanced and how he and Elizabeth ended up together. The details given over how Darcy felt about the rejection and his further actions in response to his rejected proposal were enlightening, but often a bit wordy. The description did not need to be so elaborate. After a while, it became tiresome to read about his hurt feelings. Though I enjoyed reading about his dealings with Lydia and Wickham and the lengths he went to in discovering them and marrying them.
Some of the plot points did not wrap up well. I felt that Aidan should have spent some words on explaining what happened in certain events and less time talking about Darcy’s nagging feelings. 
All in all, I enjoyed the books, the first and third more than the second. The second book took a lot of license and was a little too out of character for what I believe Darcy would do. The trilogy is an inspired look into the mind and happenings of Mr. Darcy, and Aidan does a fine job of writing in the style of Miss Austen. There were some loopholes that threw me off, but, for the most part, a charming fan fiction.

If you want a similar read to this trilogy, try these:

The Three Colonels by Jack Caldwell
Mr. Darcy's Diary by Amanda Grange

~Kristin M.

For more Jane Austen readalikes, read Part One, Part Two, and Part Three of this feature.
And don't forget to attend our great Jane in June events at the library, starting this Saturday!
Saturday at noon on the Read House Lawn you can meet the great author herself. We will have a Jane Austen impersonator join us. Sign up now!

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